Rumba Vacuum

iRobot produces a lot of robot vacuums, but which are the best? iRobot is a predominant name in the robot vacuum market and they design generally good cleaners which are easy to use. They also tend to feature the latest innovations, such as self-emptying cleaners! So to choose the right model for you, it's best to first consider which features you want and how much you're looking to spend.
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iRobot Roomba s9

iRobot Roomba e5

s9+ (9550) Wi-Fi

614 Robot Vacuum

iRobot Roomba i7

Best Rumba Vacuum 2021

Within Roomba’s product line, you’ll find that some models are better suited for certain jobs over others—but you can rest assured that there’s almost definitely one that solves your biggest cleaning concerns, whether you want a Roomba that will deep-clean your carpet, one that links to your smart home devices, or one that will vacuum your whole house at minimal cost. Here, find the best Roombas for all your vacuuming needs.

iRobot Roomba s9

If you’re looking for a vacuum with all of Roomba’s best features (and then some), go for the s9. It’s about as technologically advanced as Roombas get, featuring Wi-Fi and app integration, learned mapping and navigation, and compatibility with both Alexa and Google Assistant. But, where this model shines is in its ability to clean—and we mean really clean—the entirety of your home.

With 40 times the suction power of a standard Roomba, the s9 simultaneously lifts away small and large debris from all floor surfaces and extracts embedded crumbs from carpets. Its extra-wide, multi-surface rubber brushes prevent hair from getting tangled and, instead, shedding, dander, and other pet-related allergens are whisked away and trapped by the high-efficiency filter. Even corners and baseboards will get a deep cleaning from the s9, thanks to its specially designed corner brush.

Granted, the s9 is on the pricier side, but you’re paying for an elite level of clean that few vacuums, even other Roombas, can replicate.

PROS

  • Extra-wide brushes

  • Extremely powerful suction

CONS

  • Expensive

iRobot Roomba e5

If you’re looking for a value-packed Roomba, the e5 model is worth considering. Unlike some of the other members of the roaming Roomba family, the e5 isn’t the most feature-driven, but it includes the latest essential features.

The Roomba e5 features built-in Wi-Fi so you can monitor the mighty vac’s cleaning activity and issue voice commands via Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. It runs for about 90 minutes before it has the smarts to dock itself for a recharge. 

Like all new generation Roomba robots, the e5 features multi-surface rubber brushes that flex to maintain contact with floors. However, due to the mid-range price tag, this Roomba doesn’t come with any virtual wall barriers or the latest in smart mapping features. Even still, it offers major upgrades in terms of suction, battery life, and other smart features (like automatic recharging) over budget Roombas on the market.

PROS

  • Mid-range price point

  • Cleans up small and large debris

CONS

  • Random cleaning path

  • No virtual wall barriers

iRobot Roomba s9+ 9550 Wi-Fi Connected Robot Vacuum

For the ultimate Roomba, look to the new sleek and smart Roomba s9+. This top of the line Roomba is a splurge-worthy option that includes all the latest features of robotic vacuums, for a premium cleaning experience—and a premium price.

The Roomba s9 series available with or without a dirt disposal base, but to really get the most of Roomba’s smart vacuum, opt for the s9+, which can automatically empty its contents into a vacuum bag housed within the base. The bag can hold the dirt and debris from up to 30 cleaning sessions, and the unit will alert you within the app when it’s time to change the bag. This is Roomba’s most independent vacuum yet, meaning you don’t have to frequently empty the small, onboard dust bin. 

Of course automatic dirt disposal isn’t the only thing that makes the s9+ the premier Roomba to buy. This model includes Imprint Smart Mapping, which enables it to learn your home’s floor plan for efficient vacuuming or on-demand clean-up of specific rooms. You can enable this feature by controlling Roomba with Amazon Alexa or Google Home, with commands like, “Roomba, clean my bedroom.” The smart mapping feature of this Roomba also enables it to learn multiple levels of your home, making it easy to move the robot upstairs or downstairs without disrupting its memory of the other levels. This isn’t true of all Roomba models, which also qualifies the s9+ as a top robot vacuum for multi-level or large houses.

This Roomba is noisier than some other models, but it is attributed to the increased suction power of the s9+. In fact, the s9 has 40 times the suction of Roomba’s early 600 series robot vacuums. This translates into a deeper clean on all types of surfaces, including hard flooring and carpeted surfaces.

PROS

  • Extremely effective at removing pet hair

  • Cleans corners easily

CONS

  • Very Expensive

  • Louder than expected

iRobot Roomba 614 Robot Vacuum

Robotic vacuums sometimes struggle to thoroughly clean carpets, due to their soft surface and raised height. But, thanks to its clever design and innovative technology, this Roomba is more than capable when it comes to cleaning the carpets throughout your home for up to 90 minutes at a time.

Its three-stage cleaning system, loosens, lifts, and sucks away debris of all sizes (including pet hair), thanks to its two main cleaning brushes. Its dirt detection sensors ensure that particularly dirty, high-traffic areas don’t go overlooked, while the Edge-Sweeping Brush tackles dust and crumbs along baseboards and in corners. And the Roomba 614’s cleaning head automatically adjusts when it moves between different floor surfaces.

Although it’s one of the more affordable Roombas on the market, this model doesn’t skimp on power, consistent suction, or efficient cleaning.

PROS

  • Affordable for a Roomba

  • Three-stage cleaning system

CONS

  • Limited dust bin capacity

iRobot Roomba i7

If you want the best Roomba for smart homes, check out the full-featured and high-tech Roomba i7. This smart robot vacuum doesn’t cost as much or run as long as Roomba’s top model, but packs in all the smart home integrations you’re looking for.

The most significant features of the Roomba i7 is its navigational abilities and mapping technology. With iAdapt 3.0 Navigation, this Roomba vac is able to map its surroundings and retain the memory of your floor plan for future cleanings. Added visual localization enables Roomba to capture ‘landmarks’ it uses as a reference point for where it’s already cleaned. Imprint Smart Mapping and Link Technology give you advanced control over where and when the Roomba smart vacuum cleans. Schedule specific rooms via the Roomba app or issue voice commands with compatible smart home systems like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. 

We also love that this Roomba for smart homes takes home automation to the next level by using Imprint Link technology to automatically vacuum and mop your floors if you have a compatible Braava Jet machine. 

This Roomba is also smart enough to empty its own dustbin if you spring for the self-cleaning base. It’s available as an add-on, so you can opt for the smart vacuum only or purchase the base separately at any time.

PROS

  • Compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant

  • Easily navigates rooms and obstacles

CONS

  • Steeper price point

  • Cannot run overnight

What to Look for in a Roomba

 

Square footage

The size and square footage of your home should play a key role in how you choose which Roomba is right for you. A smaller house or apartment won’t need a Roomba with the longest battery life or the largest dust bin available, but a larger home might. In addition to how long a model will hold its charge and how much dirt it can hold onboard, also take into account whether it has a self-emptying feature, which may need to be purchased separately.

Floor surface

Most Roombas can adjust to changes in floor surface automatically, but you’ll want one with particularly powerful suction (and perhaps a higher-capacity dust bin) if you’re hoping to clean carpeted rooms with it, as higher pile surfaces will likely have more dirt and dust tracked into them. On the other hand, if your home mainly has hard floors, look for a model with rubber brushes, which will prevent debris scatter and catch dirt on tile and hardwood.

Smart capabilities

Newer and more advanced Roombas come with such bells and whistles as home mapping, adaptive technology, and app and smart home device integrations. These features will provide you with a better idea of how your Roomba cleans your home as well as a more sophisticated, empowered user experience. If all you want is a device that will clean your floors while you tackle other tasks, these features may be less of a priority.

FAQs

How do I empty a Roomba?

You can remove your Roomba’s dust bin by pressing the bin release button or tab. This will allow you to lift out the bin and empty it into the trash before sliding it back into place on the Roomba’s main body. If your Roomba is on a dirt disposal base, simply press the “HOME” button to empty its bin.

How do I maintain a Roomba’s battery?

To ensure your Roomba’s battery lasts as long as possible, keep it plugged into its charger or charging base when it isn’t actively vacuuming and don’t let it sit out, away from its charger, after it finishes cleaning. Make sure to clean the charging sensors once a month, empty its dust bin before it reaches maximum capacity, and address clogs as soon as you notice them.

How do I reset a Roomba?

Certain technological issues, like connectivity problems, may require you to reset or rebootyour Roomba. For most models, you simply press and hold the “CLEAN” button for 10 to 20 seconds and wait up to 2 minutes for the reboot to finish. Some models will require you to hold down both the “HOME” and “SPOT CLEAN” buttons for 10 seconds in order to reboot.

Why Trust The Spruce?

This article was edited and updated by Sara Coughlin, a freelance writer and The Spruce’s small appliances expert. From canister models to dustbusters, she’s researched what it takes for a vacuum to stand out in a vast and broad market—and what to look for in up-and-coming models.